Happy Fourth of July Weekend
This Sunday commemorates a special moment in our nation’s history, as America celebrates our independence 245 years ago on July 4th.
Time and time again, our nation’s unalienable rights of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness continue to bless Americans thanks to the courageous efforts of our service members. If you see an active-duty member of our military or a veteran this weekend, please be sure to thank them for fighting for our freedoms.
Below are this week’s highlights from our office.
Missourians Leading the Way and Heading Back to Work
Missouri continues to lead the way in America’s economic recovery since Governor Parson ended the pandemic unemployment insurance program last month. Our state’s unemployment rate is now at 4.2 percent, lower than 33 other states. Yet, even with this good news, there are still over 200,000 jobs unfilled in Missouri.
The pandemic unemployment insurance program was intended to be a temporary measure to help families recover from the economic impact of COVID-19, not a permanent supplement. Unfortunately, this program is now threatening our national economic recovery as labor shortages are currently disrupting supply chains, manufacturing firms and even transportation companies. Most importantly, labor shortages are preventing many small businesses in our district from thriving and growing. It’s time to get back to work.
One thing this pandemic reminded us is every job is vital and every worker is essential. It is crucial for everyone to work together to provide the goods and services we need. Thank you to each person in MO-4 who goes to work every day and shares your gifts and talents with all of us. Together, we’ll get America moving again.
Examining Our Armed Forces’ Combat Vehicles
As Ranking Member of the Tactical Air and Land Forces (TAL) subcommittee in Congress, I had the opportunity to examine the BAE Systems Facility in York, PA and get an in-depth briefing on the Army’s combat vehicles. BAE Systems is the #1 supplier for the design, production and support of survivable ground combat vehicles for the Army, Marine Corps, and Army National Guard.
Alongside TAL Chairman Rep. Donald Norcross, it was a privilege to travel via UH-40 Black Hawk, meet with industry and military leaders, and discuss the future of our Armed Forces and their vital equipment. May God bless our service members and the heroic jobs they do around the globe.
Speaker Pelosi’s “My Way Or The Highway” Plan
On the House floor this week was Speaker Pelosi’s “My Way or the Highway” legislation, which was filled with Green New Deal (GND) pipedreams and more deficit spending at the expense of American taxpayers. Incredibly, this partisan bill would provide for $276 billion in GND-related mandates, meaning close to $1 out of every $2 would be spent on the Green New Deal.
Given the spending sprees already allocated in Washington in 2021, this is insane and unsustainable.
Instead of these expensive proposals, Congress should be crafting a bill that actually focuses on real infrastructure, such as building roads and bridges. With 33,830 miles of state highways throughout Missouri, that’s a good place to start.
As President Biden prepares to withdraw our troops from Afghanistan in September, thousands of Afghan interpreters who have helped our military may be put in danger without our assistance.
That’s why I was proud to co-sponsor the HOPE for Afghan SIVs Act and see it pass the House this week. This bill would waive the requirement for Afghan Special Immigrant Visa applicants to undergo a medical examination while in Afghanistan, expediting the visa process for Afghan interpreters.
Just as these courageous interpreters supported our service members in the Middle East, we should do the same for them by ensuring their safety. It is the least we can do to repay them for their vital efforts.
Remembering LTC William V. Moore
Missouri’s Fourth Congressional District recently lost a true national hero and an exceptional man.
LTC William V. Moore, a former Wheatland native, passed away at the age of 103 and was recently interred with full military honors. As the recipient of the Distinguished Flying Cross for his bravery in World War II, he received an automatic flyover during his internment.
A 1935 Wheatland High School graduate, LTC Moore served as a teacher at White Cloud Elementary School in Wheatland after earning his education degree and teaching certification from Central Missouri State Teachers College in Warrensburg and the University of Missouri - Columbia. He then joined the United States Marine Corps, where he was assigned to Henderson Field in Guadalcanal and was a member of the Fighting Falcon Squadron.
LTC Moore led his squadron in prayer under the wing of his assigned Grumman F4F Wildcat before each mission, earning him the respected nickname the “Flying Deacon.” The Fighting Falcon Squadron was credited with the destruction of 95 enemy planes. Two of those planes were confirmed to have been destroyed by CPT Moore, and likely, yet unconfirmed, the destruction of two more enemy planes. He participated in 75 combat missions without receiving a single scratch.
For his heroism, he was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross, a citation whose recipients include astronauts John Glenn and Buzz Aldrin, and aviation pioneers Orville and Wilbur Wright (posthumously). LTC Moore received numerous citations for his distinguished service and extraordinary achievements in aerial flight against Japanese forces in the Pacific Theater during World War II. Please join me in remembering this true American hero for his valor and service to our nation.